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Montevideo, June 15th 2024 - 22:31 UTC

 

 

Iranian President killed in helicopter crash

Monday, May 20th 2024 - 10:58 UTC
Full article 2 comments
Raisi had been known in the 1980s as the “Butcher of Tehran” given his involvement in the execution of political prisoners Raisi had been known in the 1980s as the “Butcher of Tehran” given his involvement in the execution of political prisoners

A helicopter carrying Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi and Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian crashed killing all occupants, Vice President Mohammad Mokhber confirmed in the early hours of Monday. The crashed aircraft was part of a convoy of three helicopters carrying the presidential entourage. The other two landed safely in Tabriz, in northwestern Iran.

Raisi had traveled Sunday to the province of East Azerbaijan to inaugurate a dam with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev on the border between the two countries.

“An accident has occurred with the helicopter carrying the president” in the Jofa region of the western province of eastern Azerbaijan, Iran's state television reported. In addition, “unfavorable weather conditions” further hindered the relief operations, Interior Minister Ahmed Vahidi explained.

He was the second-most powerful person in the country behind Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khomeini. The Iranian Constitution mandates that, in case of death, the first vice president shall take over with the Supreme Leader's nod.

Iran launched an unprecedented attack on April 13 against Israel with 350 drones and missiles in response to a deadly strike on its diplomatic compound in Damascus. Most of the fire was intercepted by the so-called iron dome defense system. “We think that Palestine is the first issue of the Muslim world, we are convinced that the peoples of Iran and Azerbaijan continue to support the peoples of Palestine and Gaza and that they detest the Zionist regime,” Raisi said in his last speech hours before his death.

The ultra-conservative Raisi had been president of Iran after winning the June 18 elections amid a poor turnout in the absence of any strong rival. He succeeded the moderate Hasan Rohani, who had defeated him in the 2017 presidential election and who, after two consecutive terms, was unable to run again.

Raisi pursued a career within the Judiciary after being involved in the 1979 uprising against Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlevi, for which he was dubbed the “butcher of Tehran” given his involvement in the mass executions of Iranian political prisoners in the 1980s. In recent years, he had been added to the US blacklist of Iranian leaders allegedly involved in “gross human rights violations,” which Tehran had persistently denied.

Details as to the cause of the accident remain unclear beyond reports that the president’s helicopter suffered a “hard landing” in foggy and snowy weather.

Prayers were held for Raisi throughout Iran after the news of the helicopter's accident was released.

Categories: Politics, International.

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  • imoyaro

    Ululululululululu !!! *Ululating* Inshallah!

    May 20th, 2024 - 02:30 pm 0
  • Pugol-H

    Perhaps he said something to upset Putin?

    May 21st, 2024 - 10:09 am 0
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